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Speaking to your doctor

If you find speaking to your doctor about your symptoms daunting, we’ve included some tips to help you with your discussions. 

Tip 1 Tip 1

Your doctor will probably ask you lots of questions. Ahead of your visit, you may want to take a few minutes to think about what these might be, your answers and/or details you want to share:

  • Write down your symptoms and the things that set off your asthma for a week or two — look for any patterns leading up to an increase in asthma symptoms or attacks
  • If dust, pet dander, or cockroaches are present when your asthma symptoms start, it may mean your asthma is worsened by these allergens, so it’s a good idea to mention this. Have a think about the situations you find yourself in when your symptoms start or worsen, and if there are allergens about   
  • Your doctor may ask you how your asthma is today (the day of your appointment). While you might be having a good day, have a think about how your asthma has been in general – for the last week, fortnight or month
  • Be open and honest — don’t leave anything out

Tip 2 Tip 2

Tip 2

To help you get the advice and answers you’re looking for, have a list of your own questions to ask your doctor or nurse. You may want to start with these and add your own:

  • How do I know if my asthma is affecting my daily life or not? Take our survey by clicking here for a guide on how your asthma is currently affecting your day to day life, print a copy of your results and share them with your doctor
  • How do I know what type of asthma I have?
  • How do I know if my asthma is mild or severe?
  • How do I know if my asthma is made worse by allergens?
  • Do I need to be tested for an allergy? What would the test be and how is it taken?
  • What suggestions can you offer to help keep my asthma controlled? Can I have a personalised asthma action plan?
  • What asthma treatments and medications are suitable for me? 

 

If you have a young child with asthma, you may also want to ask the following1:

  • How often do we need to see a doctor or nurse?
  • Why are controllers needed every day, even when my child is feeling well? Could we just use the reliever?
  • Why does my child sometimes wheeze even though they are taking the medicine?
  • How can I tell when my child needs more or less medicine?
  • How do I know which inhaler is best for us, and whether we’re using it properly?
  • How do we clean the spacer?
  • What are the benefits and risks of alternative treatment options?